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Is Personal Training Worth the Investment?

By Sarah Baker 

With summer upon us, it’s time to don those bikinis, shorts and miniskirts, which means that we need to make sure that our bodies are summer ready. There are plenty of ways to accomplish this through diet and exercise, but have you ever considered trying a personal trainer? I have. I actually had one for a few months a few years back and have been considering trying it again. In order to help myself and you all decide whether a personal trainer is worth it, I’ve compiled a list of the advantages and disadvantages of investing in a personal trainer. 


Advantages:


1. If you’re not seeing results going at it by yourself, investing in a personal trainer might be the choice for you. A personal trainer can give you the motivation and support that you need to stick with it. They will hold you accountable and push you every step of the way. They will be able to help you to identify, set, and reach goals. 



2. If you aren’t quite sure where or how to start or are intimidated by the gym, a personal trainer might be the right fit. They can show you where to start and what to do to tone your body in the way that you want and need. 



3. If you are bored with your normal workout or need a challenge, a personal trainer can help. They can give you new or more difficult workouts that cater specifically to you.

4. If you have a specific illness, injury, or other condition, a personal trainer is a good way to go. It’s important that you pick a personal trainer with credentials and training in your specific area of need. If you are able to do that, then they can create a workout that works around and with your specific conditions.

5. If you are training for a specific event or sport, a personal trainer can help you. Whether you are training for a marathon or another specific activity, a personal trainer can create a personal workout just for your event. 

6. If you are wanting to learn from an expert instead of a video or step by step online instruction, then personal training might be for you. They can teach you the newest exercises and how to do them the correct way. By learning the correct way to do the exercises, it also helps you to reduce the risk of injury during your workout. 

7. If you are wanting definite results and supervision while you work out, a personal trainer can help. By using a personal trainer, you have someone supervising you the entire time. By always being there, you have a constant motivator, supporter, and pusher to help you achieve the results you have been wanting. 




Disadvantages:

1. The number one reason that personal training can be off-putting is the price. Hiring a personal trainer can be really expensive. Depending on your location, the amount of trainers, and their credentials, among other things. The price you will pay can range anywhere from $15-$100 an hour, but on average, you are looking to pay roughly $50 an hour. When I was using one, I was paying $156 a month for 4 half hour sessions a month. 



2. If you don’t have a very attentive personal trainer, it is definitely not worth it. Your personal trainer should be completely invested in you and only you during your time. They should be taking notes, telling you what is right and wrong, and evaluating and reevaluating you. They shouldn’t be talking to others, talking a lot in general about things that are irrelevant to your training, or be on their phone. My personal trainer really failed on this aspect. He wasn’t focused on me and seemed to zone out while I was working out.

3. Make sure that you do your research when hiring a personal trainer. You don’t want a trainer who doesn’t look the part. If they aren’t in shape, how are you supposed to be confident that they can help you? You want to also make sure that your trainer is proficient in the things that you need. You also might want to use a same gender trainer as a female is most likely to know how to work out a female and vice versa. 



4. A trainer who uses the phrase “no pain, no gain,” is probably someone who you want to avoid. Yes, you will most likely have some pain by focusing on certain muscles and really working out, but you shouldn’t be pushed too far past your limits and to the point of breaking. 

5. Making the time for a personal trainer can be hard if you work a lot or with a varying schedule or have a lot of other things on your plate. In order to use a personal trainer, you have to schedule plenty of time in advance, which can be difficult with a crazy and inconsistent schedule. This was an issue for me when I used a personal trainer because I was consistently stuck at work late and had difficulties scheduling and keeping appointments. 



6. Remember that your personal trainer cannot do the work for you. You must be willing to work out on your own as well as with your trainer. You have to give 100% in every workout to really see results. Hiring a personal trainer is not a “quick fix.” It will take months to see results so don’t get discouraged and do exactly what your trainer says as far as diet and exercise. 

Alternatives to Personal Training:

If personal training is too expensive or intimidating for you, you can try a boot camp or small group training session, which can be a cheaper alternative to personal training. You can also find many YouTube sessions on personal training and other workouts online if you are more comfortable in the comfort of your own home. Some places do offer a personal trainer to come to you, however, expect to pay much more than going to a gym. 

Don’t be afraid to speak up:

My first experience with a personal trainer wasn’t a good one and makes me nervous about trying it again. I actually ended up gaining weight (and not in the good way) even though I was following his workouts and dietary suggestions. If you decide to hire a personal trainer, makes sure that you do your research. I think that was my biggest problem. I went to a gym near work and took the first one they gave me, no questions asked. Don’t be afraid to shop around and pick the perfect one for you. You are paying the money and it can be a pretty big investment, so make sure that you are completely satisfied with everything. Personal training can have great benefits for you if you need that extra motivation or help, as long as you make sure that they are devoted to you and your needs during their time with you. Don’t be afraid to mention to them that you should be their focus if you feel that they aren’t focusing on you. However you decide to get beach body ready this summer, go forward with confidence and determination.



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